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Archer

The Michie Hospital, Queen's Gate

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Archer

Thanks to Dick Flory, I have found out that Dr. K. F. Lund was variously described as 'Hon. Surgeon in charge, Queen's Gate Hospital 1914-1918', 'Asst. Medical Officer, Michie Hospital', and 'Asst. Surg and Physician, Queen's Gate Hospital from 1918 to 1920'

I have been able to discover that the Michie Hospital and the Queen's Gate Hospital are one and the same - the British Red Cross VAD Hospital, situated at No. 184, Queen's Gate, London SW (The Michie Hospital).

I have also been able to discover that the donor and administrator of the hospital was a certain Mrs. Mary Agnes Coutts Michie, who was awarded a CBE in March 1920.

She was the widow of George McCulloch, a wealthy Australian art collector, and had a house in (surprise!), Queen's Gate.

Er ... that's it.

Is there any more any one can add, perhaps.

William

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Archer

Late breaking news ...

After further frantic digging overnight, I have discovered that Mrs Michie retired to the evocatively-named 'Broken Hill,' Miles Lane, Cobham in Surrey and died - apparently largely forgotten - on 29 November 1945. She was 88 years old.

William

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royalredcross

The BRCS has a list of all the auxiliary hospitals which were set up during WW1 to receive wounded troops. They will be able to confirm the actual address and will probably be able to tell you the number of beds and possible the person in charge. I would not think you would get much more.

Norman

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Archer

Thanks, Norman. Good lead

William :D

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BJanman

William

I have the Michie Hospital, 184 Queen's Gate. SW. 268 O/Rs listed under Affiliated Auxilliary Hosps to Queen Alexandra Military Hospital, Millbank, SW1.

I hope this helps

Barbara

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Archer

It does indeed Barbara!! Thank you very much

William

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Guest ahthomas

I have a letter on paper headed: British Red Cross Society, The Michie Hospital, 184 Queen’s Gate, S.W. Commandant: Mrs Harry Isaacs. It was dated 14 July/16 and written to Maggie Thomas, the mother of 2/Lt Wilfrid Patrick Otto Thomas of the 9th York & Lancaster Regiment (my uncle) on receipt of the news that he was missing - in fact he was killed on 1/7/1916, the first day day of the battle of the Somme. The letter reads:

My own dear darling

What can I write just nothing but that all my love and heart is with you Oh my dearest it all seems just too hard to bear. The letter I should have had from you first has only just come, the one to Marie came first. My dear love to Harry. Your good clever beautiful boy, I know how your hearts are broken. Its all too cruel and unspeakable. I shall come to see you very soon darling unless Harry tells me he thinks it would upset you he will tell me candidly. I am grieving with you both all the time. Your own loving Ethel.

The reference to Harry in the letter was to Maggie's husband Harry Otto Thomas, a director of the publishing firm Illiffe & Sons Ltd. Maggie gave birth the following month to a daughter, Ruth.

Mrs Harry Isaacs was the wife of the Lord Mayor of London in 1894, a prosperous wholesale fruit importer in the City and the brother of Sir Rufus Isaacs, Attorney General in Asquith’s cabinet and later Viceroy of India. Mrs Isaacs was (probably - I'd like more information about her) née Marie Cathcart, one of three Cathcart sisters, the daughters of Mrs E.M. Cathcart who owned and ran a school in Hampstead. Maggie Thomas née Bishop had attended the school from the age of 5, when her grandmother died (her mother had died in childbirth), and she and her father Joseph Bishop had boarded with the Cathcart family until Maggie left school. Maggie remained close friends with the daughters, and Mrs Harry Isaacs came to be known as 'Granny Isaacs' while her husband was 'Uncle Harry' to the 5 children of Maggie and Harry Thomas, of whom Wilfrid (b. 1896) was the eldest.

Marie, the eldest Cathcart daughter, had been a student at the Royal Academy School of Art, and assisted her mother in the conduct of the school. Maggie Thomas's youngest son Donald, wrote that: "Marie, during that war, founded and administered a hospital for Officers in Kensington – aided by her sister Ethel, a professionally qualified medical dispenser. For this voluntary service, which revealed her considerable administrative ability, she was awarded the O.B.E. In the very early days of the war, before embarking on the hospital project, she organised a magnificent concert for soldiers in one of the London theatres." The claim in this account that it was a hospital for Officers (which I attribute to Donald's snobbish attitude) conflicts with the statement made in another reply to this correspondence, that the hospital had space for "268 O/Rs" (assuming that O/R is an abbreviation for Other Ranks).

Anyone able to add to these details about Mrs Harry Isaacs and the Cathcarts?

ahthomas

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Archer

Harry Michael Isaacs was the son of Joseph M. Isaacs and the brother of Rufus D. Isaacs.

He was married in the winter of 1898 to Mariette (Ellen) Cathcart (marriage registered in the Kensington Registration District in the quarter ended December 1898).

He was never Lord Mayor of London. See the List of Lord Mayors. (Don't confuse him with Sir Harry Aaron Isaacs who WAS Lord Mayor of London in 1889-90.)

Mariette (Ellen) Cathcart was born in about 1859 (she was described as two ywars old when the census was taken in April 1861), the daughter of James Faucitt Cathcart, an actor, and his wife Mary Ellen Cathcart. See Biography of James Faucitt Cathcart.

She was made an OBE for her services in January 1919. See Award.

She died at No. 12, Addison Crescent, Kensington on 23 July 1939.

William

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dawjvw49

The Michie Hospital at 184 Queens Gate was established by Mrs Mary Coutts-Michie. Mrs Michie born Agnes Mary Smith in Feb. 1857 at Nottinghamshire was the daughter of a Miner who migrated with wife and surviving children to Queensland Australia in 1872. In the early 1880’s Mary and her first husband went to work on Mt Gipps cattle station in far western NSW. Mary worked as the housekeeper. Mary’s first husband died and she later married the station manager George McCulloch.

During the 1880’s a boundary rider on the station discovered ore on a part of the station known as “the Broken Hill Paddock“. McCulloch later led a syndicate of seven station workers to form “Broken Hill Mining Company”, which eventually became Broken Hill Proprietary (BHP).

In 1892, George & Mary McCulloch now very wealthy left Broken Hill and returned to England, prior to leaving their generous donations were instrumental in establishing the Broken Hill Hospital and Art Gallery. After their return to England they began to acquire a large art collection. In 1894 they built a mansion at 184 Queens Gate to house that collection.

George died in 1907 leaving Mary an extremely wealthy widow. In 1908 Mary remarried this time to a Scottish artist James Courtts-Michie. In 1913 Mrs Michie sold her art collection of over 400 pieces. With her new husband she built a home in Haslemere Surrey, and gave the house at Queens Gate to a group of London artists rent free as a salon for study and exhibitions.

I am not sure exactly when Mrs Michie established the hospital in the Queens Gate house, but it was probably not long after the start of the war. I believe she worked for the Red Cross for approximately 5 years mostly as administrator of the hospital. London telephone books list the telephone at 184 Queens Gate under the name of Mrs Michie until 1916 then again in 1920. In the in between years it is listed as Michie Hospital.

James Michie died in 1919, after which Mary Michie eventually settled at Miles Lane Cobham in 1925. She named the house “Broken Hill” ,following a returned visit to her family and to Broken Hill, in Australia.

Several members of Mrs Michie’s family served in the Australian forces during the war. Two were killed, one at Bullecourt in May 1917 and one at Fleurbaix in July 1916.

The mansion at 184 Queens Gate was demolished in 1971.

I hope this adds a little more information to your knowledge of the hospital’s history and of Mrs Michie.

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Archer

Thank you, David ... lovely stuff and most welcome. :D

Between us, we forumites are certainly getting to grips with this minor footnote to the history of the war.

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dawjvw49

Just thought I would add this photo of Mrs Michie which I just found.

post-15330-1163920945.jpg

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